Thursday, July 17, 2003

Haas drops Sprague, brings in Andretti


The Associated Press

HARRISBURG, N.C. - Haas CNC Racing changed drivers on its NASCAR Winston Cup team Wednesday, replacing rookie Jack Sprague with John Andretti.

Fired last month by Petty Enterprises, Andretti will be in the car for at least the next two races, starting Sunday in Loudon, N.H.

"We are thrilled that there was someone available to us of John Andretti's caliber, with his vast amount of Winston Cup experience," general manager Joe Custer said.

But Custer did not commit to Andretti beyond the event July 27 at Pocono Raceway.

"We'll evaluate how things are going and move forward from there," he said.

Sprague, a three-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck series champion, failed to finish better than 14th in 18 starts this season. He is 37th in the points.

Andretti has been racing full time in Winston Cup since 1994, with four poles and two victories.

BRICKYARD WRECKS: Todd Bodine and Christian Fittipaldi crashed during testing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for next month's Brickyard 400. Neither driver was injured, and track doctors cleared both to drive.

FORMULA ONE: Anheuser-Busch will sponsor cars from the Williams-BMW team. The cars of Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya will display the company's logo beginning with this weekend's British Grand Prix as part of a deal that runs through 2008.


CALLING MAC: Britain's Lawn Tennis Association is in talks with seven-time Grand Slam winner John McEnroe about coaching British players following their poor Wimbledon performance this year.

"If he can come in for three or four days and work with the right players, I'm sure he has got something to offer," LTA performance director David Felgate said.

Tim Henman was the top Brit at Wimbledon, reaching the quarterfinals, and was the only one of 10 British men to reach the third round. All five British women lost in the first round.


HURRICANES: Carolina acquired defenseman Bob Boughner from Calgary for a fourth-round draft pick in 2004. Boughner, signed through the 2003-04 season, will make $2.3 million.


TICKET SALES: More than 473,000 tickets for the 2004 Athens Olympics were purchased during the first round of sales. The 473,222 tickets sold exceeded 300,000 targets for the one-month period ending June 12.

High schools

Enquirer/Channel 9 Player of the Year Mike Daniels will lead a contingent of top local football recruits into the 46th annual PNC Big 33 Football Classic on Saturday in Hershey, Pa.

The game, one of the country's top prep all-star games, pits Ohio stars against Pennsylvania stars at Hersheypark Stadium.

Area players on the Ohio team include QB/WR Daniels (Princeton); WR Bill Poland, OL Tom Anevski and DL Tony Carvitti (all Elder); LB Ray Edwards (Woodward); OL Ty Hall (Anderson); LB Derrick Jeffries (Withrow); and DL Brandon Maupin (Lakota West).

The game will be televised live on Fox Sports Net at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Tom Groeschen

LA SALLE: Offensive tackle Rodney Pompey has given an oral commitment to the University of Cincinnati football program, La Salle coach Tom Grippa said.

Pompey, who will be a senior at La Salle, is 6 feet 8 and 360 pounds and will start at right tackle this year.

Pompey joins Harrison two-way tackle Jeff Browning in giving early commitments to UC for 2004.

Tom Groeschen

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Haas drops Sprague, brings in Andretti
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